I was never a runner. I was a cheerleader for YEARS. I couldn’t run for the life of me. I actually felt like I was gonna die every time I ran. Fast forward 7 years and I am running 2-3 half marathons a year and a handful of 5K’s and 10K’s. If you don’t like running at all, this article is not for you. This is just a few quick tips on how to get started.
How to get started? PS- you don’t have to be a triathlete to be a runner. You don’t have to run a 7 minute 54 pace. You don’t even need to run the whole time! Here is a list of a few tips that helped me became a runner/start running.
1.) Just start! Stop thinking about a plan. Don’t worry about pace. Will I run outside or inside? I don’t have a treadmill. It’s too cold. What if I can’t run? YOU CAN! Stop the excuses. Just start.
Research shows a good beginner running target is to get outside or on a treadmill for 20 minutes, three days a week. Eventually, aim to build up to four days, and then you can bump 20 minutes to 25 and so on.
2.) Run Walk Run! Start off by running and then gauge how you feel. Walk if you have to.
“Every able-bodied person can be a runner,” says Gordon Bakoulis, a running coach based in New York City. “Just start slowly and build up gradually.” Most coaches agree that the best way to become a runner is with a run-walk program.
I love to PIN good workouts and hiit treadmill workouts. If you are running for 20 minutes, aim to run for 2-3 minutes, then walk for 1-2 minutes.
3.) Proper Technique- Always remember a good warm up and cool down is important to prepare your body for a run or to bring the heart rate down.
Meyer has a few simple questions he tells his clients to ask themselves on the road: Am I forward leaning through the chest? Are my arms swinging? Is my core engaged? Are my knees driving? Are my heels nice and high? “Really focus on picking up your heels behind you, especially if you’re feeling tired, and your legs are feeling heavy to take your mind off the run for a little,” he says.
4.) Change it up- change up location/scenery, change up pace, change up the workout, change up the workout gear!! Treadmills can get so boring. I love to run outside, especially for my long runs. I have run 11 miles on a treadmill, but it’s actually running hell. I usually play a movie or I watch Friends when I run and it helps me, but running outside for different routes is so fun! I have a weird OCD about where I run and it needs to be different every time.
I hate running at a constant speed, especially if on the treadmill. I love to do HIIT runs! Run fast, run slow. I usually alternate between 6.0 mph and 9.0, sometimes 7.0, sometimes 8.0. I just love to alternate the speeds. This also goes for run, walk.
Don’t be afraid to incorporate weight training and HIIT workouts. I love to use Beach Body at home or a zumba class, hiit class, yoga, cycling, swimming, body pump, etc.
5.) Grab a partner. Run with someone if you can! Especially during the warmer months, running with others is so fun!
6.) Don’t get discouraged. Just keep going. Think about why you started running in the first place. Remember, you don’t have to be this triathlete or professional runner.
Before you start your next run, Meyer recommends deciding what you want to get out of it to keep your focus. Do you want to get outside and enjoy it? Do you want to end smiling and feeling good? Do you want to get mentally or physically stronger? Do you just want to sweat a little? Whatever it is, point it out and use it as your motivation to just keep going.
Running allows me to NOT think and just do. I love to run for my own mental clarity. I LOVE the feeling after a good run. I love the challenge. I personally love to run alone with a podcast if I am outside or watching something on my phone on the treadmill. It makes me feel strong and healthy. It is totally not for everyone, but I hope you I ignited a spark in you to start something new today whether it’s running, finding a fun class at the gym, walking everyday, etc.
Things you need for running:
Running watch (I love the garmin forerunner 235. The Fitbit versa and Apple Watch are not accurate with pace and distance)
Get fitted for running sneakers at a reputable place (I loved feet fleet) brooks, new balance, ASICS are great but the people will measure and assess your foot to see what sneaker best fits your running style
Good headphones. Wireless or not whatever you prefer
Good ass leggings that stay up, tight running shorts, easy breathing running shirts, headbands, winter headbands that support running
Running arm band or “fanny pack” to hold cards, running gel, money etc
Spotify or a motivating and upbeat playlist
A supportive tribe